Type of fouling organism: Anemone
Sea anemones along with sea pens and most corals belong to the class Anthozoa. There are no medusa forms and polyps have vertical divisions or mesenteries. There is a central mouth which is surrounded by tentacles with nematocysts which are used to entangle and capture prey. Typically, sea anemone polyps have six to twelve mesenteries with a varying number of tentacles.
Metridium senile is an anemone with a diverse range of forms. The large base is wider than the column, which is smooth and often irregular. It has numerous tentacles at the top of the column, which when expanded form a ‘plume’. May reach 300 mm in height. The tentacles are long and slender and rarely exceed 200 in number. The colour varies but most commonly ranges from white orange to dark green/brown and grey, with the occasional appearance of red or yellow varieties.
Environment and Habitat
- Found attached to any suitable hard substratum.
- Reproductive type: Separate sexes, fission.
- Found on other biofouling organisms.
Effects and Impacts
- Problematic for stock species as can compete for space and resources.
Control/ Strategies and Management
Principles of Management
C Combat Settlement
- Range encompasses from Scandinavia down to the Bay of Biscay in the north east Atlantic. Not known in the western Mediterranean but may have been introduced into the Adriatic, where it has been observed.
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